Off My Mind: The Connection Between Dick Grayson and Owlman

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Posted by G-Man (30625 posts) - - Show Bio

Now that everyone has hopefully read the conclusion to The Night of the Owls arc in the pages of Scott Snyder's BATMAN, there's one development that still needs to be addressed. In BATMAN #7, the revelation was made that Dick Grayson was meant to be a Talon, one of the Court of Owls' assassins.

Batman figured out that Haly's Circus was actually a place where the future Talons were recruited. Those with the skills the Court desired, were taken and turned into their weapons. Dick's parents had been killed and Bruce Wayne took him in before that could happen.

Scott Snyder explained before where this idea came from. There is actually another connection between Dick and being a Talon. In fact, Dick actually operated under the guise of Owlman back in 1957.

== TEASER ==

It was a story in BATMAN #107. Superman had found a lead lined box floating in outer space. He gave it to Batman to study but somehow a young Dick Grayson accidentally touched a hidden button that opened the box. What came out was a gas that caused him to become dizzy, but more importantly, made him grow "as big as a man."

Dick no longer had the body of a child. With Superman away, Batman was unsure what to do. When the Bat-Signal went off, Batman had to answer but Dick couldn't go along as Robin.

Dick no longer could fit into his Robin costume. Without knowing the full effect of the gas and how long he would remain an adult, Batman stated that it would jeopardize his identity if Batman was with an adult Robin the same time Bruce Wayne's ward mysteriously grew up.

Being an eager sidekick, Dick couldn't simply sit home while Batman went off to fight crime. Finding Bruce's owl costume for an upcoming masquerade ball, Dick decided to become a new crimefighter known as "Owlman." Owlman, as you should know by now is the identity Lincoln March took on at the end of The Night of the Owls.

Dick's tenure as Owlman didn't last long. Batman kept reminding him he wasn't an adult. He wasn't happy that Dick disobeyed his instructions to stay home. He even said he would "tan his hide" if he wasn't so big.

But Dick wasn't quite used to operating in an adult's body. This lead to his being captured by the bad guys. They even unmasked him but because the effect of the gas would eventually wear off, Dick would revert to a child and it wouldn't matter if his true face had been seen.

Was this just a big coincidence? Of course not. Scott Snyder is known to do a bit of research. It's no surprise that he somehow knew about or came across this old issue. This shows that while stories from this period may not have a lot of significance to the New 52 era, there is still a respect for these past stories.

Who would have thought such a simple and silly story could have resulted in one of the big revelations of Snyder's current run? It just goes to show you that all the past Golden Age and Silver Age stories could have an impact to this day.

Tony Guerrero is the Editor-in-Chief of Comic Vine. You can follow him on Twitter @GManFromHeck. He wonders how many times Bruce actually "tanned" Robin's hide.

Staff
#1 Posted by Inverno (13061 posts) - - Show Bio

just as planned

#2 Posted by ZZoMBiE13 (669 posts) - - Show Bio

Snyder is such a pro. There's just no one writing better comics than him right now. He gets Gotham and Batman in a way few manage. Love his work and I hope they keep him working on Batman for years to come!

#3 Posted by Night Thrasher (3599 posts) - - Show Bio

@ZZoMBiE13 said:

Snyder is such a pro. There's just no one writing better comics than him right now. He gets Gotham and Batman in a way few manage. Love his work and I hope they keep him working on Batman for years to come!

I would agree that Snyder is ONE of the best. But, I think that Hickman is giving him serious competition for the BEST right now. As much as I love Batman right now, I think I like Fantastic Four and FF a little more. But either way you can't go wrong.

Online
#4 Posted by Deadcool (6809 posts) - - Show Bio

@ZZoMBiE13: I think that Snyder is great, but for different reasons, I don't think that bringing Golden Age stuff back makes him a good writer, he is good because I enjoy his stuff, you can write good stuff without bringing this kind of stuff back.

#5 Posted by SmoothJammin (2332 posts) - - Show Bio

I remember seeing that cover online once. Wow fun little twist. Didn't expect to see it come up again, especially not in conjunction with what Scott was doing in Court of Owls. Good stuff

#6 Posted by Eyz (3095 posts) - - Show Bio

Woah!

#7 Posted by TwistedGamer (79 posts) - - Show Bio

I'm so behind on batman! looks like I'm in for a treat.

and is Nightwing worth getting into?

#8 Edited by FanofUltraman (153 posts) - - Show Bio

You know, there's also a story in Countdown I think it was, where Owlman on Earth-3 (evil Batman) has a sidekick named Talon (evil Robin). And this was only a couple of years ago. Might not have been all-that-intensive research. xD Speaking of which, it's a little strange that Owlman is the on "Prime Earth" or whatever. Owlman has always been an A.U. doppelganger, so I'm interested to see who'll replace him when(if) they introduce the Crime Syndicate.

#9 Edited by Miss_Garrick (1757 posts) - - Show Bio

Again, another lame owl costume! There are just no cool owl costumes out there.

#10 Posted by Sekele (276 posts) - - Show Bio

@Miss_Garrick:

Night Owl?

#11 Posted by Glitch_Spawn (17132 posts) - - Show Bio

This is awesome!

#12 Posted by Dark_Vengeance_ (14587 posts) - - Show Bio

In Snyder we trust.

#13 Posted by Mandrewgora (293 posts) - - Show Bio

hey nice! Also I love that pic of dick grayson getting slapped.

#14 Posted by marveljoker (6 posts) - - Show Bio

Nice twist there I might delve a bit deeper into the talons after this :)

#15 Posted by Miss_Garrick (1757 posts) - - Show Bio

@Sekele: IMO, nope.

#16 Posted by djotaku (441 posts) - - Show Bio

And later Robin became Batman and when Batman came back there were two Bat Men

#17 Posted by thespideyguy (2645 posts) - - Show Bio

Why didn't the court of the owls kill Bruce when he adopted dick.

#18 Posted by wdchefdave (136 posts) - - Show Bio

Getting kinda tired of all these owls!

I'll just watch "Snakes on Planes" instead of buy this crap...

#19 Posted by Dedpool (299 posts) - - Show Bio

So wait the new Owlman is a bad guy? And I'd love to see Wrath and Skorn from "The Batman" show up!

#20 Posted by Sovereign91001 (3982 posts) - - Show Bio

@TwistedGamer: Yeah it's a pretty solid title.

#21 Posted by Imagine_Man15 (1801 posts) - - Show Bio

@TwistedGamer said:

I'm so behind on batman! looks like I'm in for a treat.

and is Nightwing worth getting into?

Yes. Nightwing is very good... not on par with Batman, but very good nonetheless. One of my favorites out of the relaunch.

#22 Posted by The Mighty Monarch (2219 posts) - - Show Bio

And let the 'Scott Snyder is just a poor man's Grant Morrison' comments commence :P

#23 Posted by TheMess1428 (2176 posts) - - Show Bio

@FanofUltraman: Yeah, they explained that Talon from Earth-3 chose to be good because he was in love with Duela Dent and they traveled to New Earth and both served time on the Teen Titans. Talon from Earth-3 was a doppelganger of Tim Drake, though.

@Dedpool: Wrath and Skorn already are in the comics. http://www.comicvine.com/wrath/29-50593/

#24 Posted by TheMess1428 (2176 posts) - - Show Bio

@thespideyguy: Because right when Batman was a new hero, the Talon of that time had seen him and became scared of him. Because he failed at killing his target because of his fear of "the giant bat," the Court shut down their Talon and was about to begin training of Dick Grayson. Fate intervened and Bruce took in Dick, resulting in the Court not having a current Talon for quite a while. Instead of bringing back an old one, they decided to train Saiko instead, eventually realizing that it would fail. Because everything was collapsed into a 5 year period, it makes more sense that they would try to train Saiko for that 5 years instead of like 12 years if it were Pre-Flashpoint.

#25 Posted by htb106 (1641 posts) - - Show Bio

I find that quite interesting, it seems everything Scott Snyder writes that everyone thinks is new actually has been hinted at for decades.

I think the costume Bruce was going to wear to the masquerade is hilarious, if only Batman was that light-hearted these days.

#26 Posted by SpidermanWins (3975 posts) - - Show Bio

Wow, cool

#27 Posted by BatClaw89 (144 posts) - - Show Bio

Grant Morrison is Notorious for doing exactly this. Way to take a page from Grant's Book.

#28 Posted by Webjaker (366 posts) - - Show Bio
Nostalgia
#29 Posted by Webjaker (366 posts) - - Show Bio

I did like this storyline but its pretty unrealistic. Firstly that tooth is huge. Also all these years of crime fighting at Batman's side and solo and that tooth was never knocked free nor was it picked up in a scan. And why didnt he just say - Let me take a look at your teeth because according to my investigation, you were meant to be a Talon...

#30 Posted by Wolverine0628 (398 posts) - - Show Bio

Wow, he sure does his research!  Way to go, Snyder!
#31 Posted by AskaniSon295 (427 posts) - - Show Bio

Maybe the Flying Graysons were part of the Court of Owls and maybe one or more of dick graysons family didn't die but are members of the Court of Owls?

#32 Posted by sesquipedalophobe (4691 posts) - - Show Bio

Writing was so horrible back then. A suddenly aged Dick Grayson wouldn't strike someone as an odd occurrence, but an aged- Robin and Dick Grayson would draw suspicion? There was a reboot for a reason. Let it die and the fanboyism will subside.

#33 Posted by DEGRAAF (7870 posts) - - Show Bio

@TwistedGamer said:

I'm so behind on batman! looks like I'm in for a treat.

and is Nightwing worth getting into?

I've been a Dick Grayson fan since his he first started wearing his black and blue uniform so i am a little biased but i would say Night wing is definitely worth getting in to

#34 Posted by jinxuandi (595 posts) - - Show Bio

@sesquipedalophobe: I haven't read this issue but I'd guess the issue of how Bruce explained Dick being suddenly grown-up is probably addressed in one of the panels not included here. It's comics, remember. Suspension of disbelief and all that.

#35 Posted by thveej (203 posts) - - Show Bio

@Night Thrasher said:

@ZZoMBiE13 said:

Snyder is such a pro. There's just no one writing better comics than him right now. He gets Gotham and Batman in a way few manage. Love his work and I hope they keep him working on Batman for years to come!

I would agree that Snyder is ONE of the best. But, I think that Hickman is giving him serious competition for the BEST right now. As much as I love Batman right now, I think I like Fantastic Four and FF a little more. But either way you can't go wrong.

Yep, I feel Snyder and Hickman are the best right now. Synder's run from Detective Comic to Batman has been awesome, and Hickman's FF and Fantastic Four run has just been epic. Really hard to chose between the two. I love Batman as a character, but I never thought I would care for FF before reading Hickman's stuff. Although there were a few FF titles that I didn't care much for (the inhuman parts really), but the rest were "Fantastic".

#36 Posted by richardjohngrayson (414 posts) - - Show Bio

I love Snyder's Batman and Higgin's Nightwing favorite books every month.

#37 Posted by Necrotic_Lycanthrope (2388 posts) - - Show Bio

Part of me kind of wonders what Dick would've looked like as a Talon (not Owlman, but a legit fully trained Talon assassin for the court),

#38 Posted by JamDamage (1109 posts) - - Show Bio

Did actually call himself Owlman tho.

#39 Posted by ThanosIsMad (2193 posts) - - Show Bio

@FanofUltraman said:

You know, there's also a story in Countdown I think it was, where Owlman on Earth-3 (evil Batman) has a sidekick named Talon (evil Robin). And this was only a couple of years ago. Might not have been all-that-intensive research. xD Speaking of which, it's a little strange that Owlman is the on "Prime Earth" or whatever. Owlman has always been an A.U. doppelganger, so I'm interested to see who'll replace him when(if) they introduce the Crime Syndicate.

No one. They'll probably explain it as Thomas Wayne Jr being inducted into the Court of Owls, thus keeping classic Owlman origins while tying it into the DCnU stuff.

#40 Posted by ZZoMBiE13 (669 posts) - - Show Bio

@thveej said:

@Night Thrasher said:

@ZZoMBiE13 said:

Snyder is such a pro. There's just no one writing better comics than him right now. He gets Gotham and Batman in a way few manage. Love his work and I hope they keep him working on Batman for years to come!

I would agree that Snyder is ONE of the best. But, I think that Hickman is giving him serious competition for the BEST right now. As much as I love Batman right now, I think I like Fantastic Four and FF a little more. But either way you can't go wrong.

Yep, I feel Snyder and Hickman are the best right now. Synder's run from Detective Comic to Batman has been awesome, and Hickman's FF and Fantastic Four run has just been epic. Really hard to chose between the two. I love Batman as a character, but I never thought I would care for FF before reading Hickman's stuff. Although there were a few FF titles that I didn't care much for (the inhuman parts really), but the rest were "Fantastic".

I've never read much of the Fantastic Four. I always liked them as characters, I just never really bought any of their books. If you guys think they're on the same level as Snyder's Batman, maybe it's time I gave them a try. :)

I did pick up that one issue of FF where Johnny was living with Peter Parker. That was a lot of fun.

#41 Posted by Night Thrasher (3599 posts) - - Show Bio

@ZZoMBiE13: You should definitely at least try it. My only fear is that you'll pick up an issue in the middle of the HUGE arc that will completely leave you lost. He has a really great run that covers a lot over a good number of issues. But definitely worth reading and getting caught up on.

Online
#42 Posted by dcboycm (6 posts) - - Show Bio

Mind Blown!

#43 Posted by ZZoMBiE13 (669 posts) - - Show Bio

@Night Thrasher: Typically when I try something new, I don't just pick up the current issue. I like to get the last 4 or 5 to avoid just what you're talking about. Usually, even if you start lost, you can get caught up enough in that time frame. And my local shop tends to keep about that many on the shelf (provided they haven't run out anyway).

Thanks for the heads up though. :)

#44 Posted by GR2Blackout (2564 posts) - - Show Bio

Maybe all these years they had that planned for Court of Owls... maybe the past writers came up with the idea... :| Now I'm all mystery solvey... and weird...

#45 Posted by Romulus9000 (377 posts) - - Show Bio

This is what i love about Snyder and other great comic writers. They aren't only writers, but historians. Snyder does his research and because he is so commited he delivers amazing stories with facts fueling the fire. Bravo, Mr. Snyder. Bravo.

#46 Posted by THEBATFoE (110 posts) - - Show Bio

@Sekele: YES!!!! My thoughts exactly. :)

#47 Posted by THEBATFoE (110 posts) - - Show Bio

@thespideyguy That' a ood point!

#48 Posted by JonesDeini (3620 posts) - - Show Bio

Dick being meant to be a Tallon was bar none, the dumbest moment of anything Batman related Snyder's ever written. That one there was definitely overreaching. I get what he wanted to accomplish there, but no. It really opens up a logic hole in the Court of Owls story.

#49 Posted by RedOwl_1 (1664 posts) - - Show Bio

.... yeah I've actually noticed it :/ I read it half year ago..... don't ask how or why, I still remember how much the story sucked :P

@Webjaker said:

Nostalgia

LOL, no matter how big he is, things still the same :D

#50 Posted by FanofUltraman (153 posts) - - Show Bio

Or maybe they'll realize that despite the Crime Syndicate being so bad-ass, they all have terrible names. (Seriously, Owlman? Power Ring?! Yeah, that strikes fear into the heart of the world's population. You might as well call Superman "Red Cape". And then the others just sound like porn stars. (Ultraman, Superwoman, Johnny Quick...)

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